Top-Down Promoted “Affordability” Definitions Run Aground in P.E.I.

A red house in a green yard that appears to be perfectly upside down
At the Island of Rugen in Germany photo by Goya60 is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Social housing? Must be, if that's what politicians say it is!

When it comes to housing, what to make of the term “affordable” these days? Aided and abetted by the housing industry in search of funding, as well as national and regional governments that want voter support,1 the term “affordable” has reverted to its original captivity in the eye of the beholder.

Is this housing — any housing — affordable? Of course it is. Every house is “affordable” in the eye at least of someone with a suitable pocketbook.

It seems that other useful terms for discussing housing affordability crises are also being redefined into mushy nonsense, if events in North America’s tiniest federal “state,” Prince Edward Island, are to be considered.

What is “social housing” and for that matter the term’s almost-always synonyms, “public housing” and “council housing?” All of these terms seem to be coming apart at the seams, their disintegration actively abetted by federal government with a political agenda.

An opinion piece in the local media aims to set the record straight. Read in The Guardian: Opposition housing outrage is perplexing


  1. Since the middle classes turn out to vote in bigger numbers than the lower classes, it’s unsurprising that political parties are keen to reward the middle class with a vote friendly version of “affordable” housing

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